Fast, affordable Internet access for all.
Gig.U Delivers its Gigabit to Maine
“We will plant the first seed in fertile economic soil,” he said. Kittredge said the Orono and Old Town area, with the University of Maine at the center, is prime real estate for getting the high-speed service off the ground and considering whether it will work in larger markets such as Bangor or rural markets in northern and eastern Maine. For area businesses and researchers inside and outside the university, having so much more bandwidth available will open up new opportunities with far-reaching consequences, according to Kittredge.However, we continue to be concerned about the long term ramifications of this approach. GWI will own the network and decide what the rules of the network are. Who will be running GWI in 5, 10, or 20 years? Could a major company like FairPoint or Time Warner Cable buy it and fundamentally change it? Companies come and go, but communities will need fast, affordable, and reliable access to the Internet for as long as we can imagine. We are curious what the details are - what is the public contributing to this partnership? What is it getting in return? Thus far, we aren't sure. What we do know is that the Gig.U approach is far preferable to being reliant on Time Warner Cable, at least in the short term. Probably in the medium term. And over the long term, who knows? Communities need to carefully weigh these long term decisions.
The Southwestern Waldo County Broadband Coalition (SWCBC) is close to securing a major victory for local Internet choice in the face of a well-funded opposition campaign sweeping the Pine Tree State as the Big Telecom lobby and its allies try to undermine the very idea of publicly-owned, locally-controlled broadband networks in Maine and elsewhere. The five SWCBC towns clustered about 30 miles east of Augusta are looking to create what is known as a Broadband Utility District (BUD). Four of those towns recently voted in favor of establishing a BUD. Montville will vote later this month.